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How many levels of “undo” are available?

Note to self: traveling with a sick toddler who is on steroids for croup, without a tag team partner, is a recipe for disaster.


Even though we travel well and often, this trip is not one for the win column.

Here are the highlights from our trip–not pictured: sleepless nights and a Grumpy Gus whose sole word was “NO”.

Honey’s 90th Birthday.

Riding THE TROLLEY in Old Town.

And yes, I went to the Women’s March.



Find your Chartwell

It was the summer of 2006. I was finishing my time in London at LSE, but way busier with the World Cup, Wimbledon, goodbyes, and any reason to party. And I had the cutest damn nose ring.

But one of the best things I did in those last few days in London that summer, was visit Chartwell, the country home of Winston and Clementine Churchill. I went by myself (a good start). It is a train journey which required a steep cab to the property and a long country walk to the house. I remember I got a button at the entrance that says “History Matters” (which came in handy for an interview with a firm later) and I still have it. But above all else, I still have the memories (“mostly the ones I can’t forget”) of my visit. It was a beautiful day and I found some peace for myself there.


Fast-forward to this week. The latest PBS Masterpiece is called, “Churchill’s Secret” about his summer of 1953 (not ’69), most of which was spent at Chartwell in recovery. I think I was spoiled for remembering salient details about history and his life because I knew the Bermuda Conference did not take place that summer and he did not die until 1965 so he was not about to die just then. Loving both Churchill and his Chartwell, I really enjoyed this “tv movie” and the performances of  Michael Gambon (Dumbledore v 2.0) as WLSC and Lindsay Duncan (to me Angela of MI-5) as Clementine.

Kudos to Pam Dam for the advance notice–as she knew I would just love, love, love the show as it features some of my favorites places and historical figures. I hope you enjoy it too. 

p.s. Shortly after my visit to Chartwell, I was jet-lagged and back in Virginia. I wrote an email to my nearest and dearests (this was 2006 aka before my blog) and called it “Home from Home”. I’ve unearthed it and share it here. #tbt




Now accepting reservations

Some travelers live and die by a B&B. The first time I stayed in one was in Hamilton. I went up when Patrick was a freshman and I sat the LSAT. Needless to say, my memories of that weekend are not my favorite. Becky’s sister, Vivi, owns and operates a B&B in Austin, called The Fairview, if ever you are there but I am telling you people, this business is not for slackers. What business is?

During our trip to Oregon, we stayed at the B&B called A Tuscan Estate in McMinnville. If every B&B offered a French-style, seated, three-course breakfast I might also learn to live and die by them. Yes there are other factors (the room, the hospitality, the location–also pretty damn good in this case), but the food was a highlight and a great start to a hard day of wine tasting.

On the first morning, we were served a quiche made with a crepe crust, truffle oil, and gruyere. You know how I feel about gruyere. After everything was served, the old French chef named Jacques came out and asked us if we all enjoyed our breakfast. He then went on to explain that everyone was served by a single ostrich egg. There were maybe nine of us at breakfast. It was rich, and delicious. And not gluten or dairy free, by any stretch of the imagination, which I sincerely appreciate.

On morning two, more of the same–homemade pastry, fresh squeezed juice, and coffee until you float away. The eggs served were super-instagram worthy.



So now we are home and still dreaming of ostrich eggs.

After OJ and I took mamere to the airport this morning (and saw another MOPS mom dropping off her mother-in-law for her return flight home), I realized that we have ZERO VISITORS on the books here at Tottering Hall.

I wouldn’t call our establishment a “bed and breakfast” (and it is NOT my dream to open one–EVER) or my culinary education French classical like Jacques, but I can offer breakfast tacos… Now accepting reservations.


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